Crafting the TentBlogger Brand with Caricature Artwork

Initial design sketches, etc.

When I first sat down and began my branding exercises for TentBlogger I did exactly the same things that I have done for the rest of my businesses previously: I just started spewing ideas into my Moleskine notebook with little rhyme or reason.

At some point though I do eventually find the patterns of the information that I had began jotting down and eventually I walk through a more classic set of exercises that capture a few of these elements, some of which you may be familiar with:

  • Paper napkin sketches, notes
  • Character
  • Voice
  • Identity
  • Relationship(s) and Target Audience
  • Color(s)
  • Positioning and Messaging
  • Mood Boards and Emotions
  • Perceptions
  • Clarify Goals, Direction
  • Metrics, Research, Competitive Audits
  • And more…

I could spend 10 blog posts on each one of these (and maybe I will later) but essentially my goal was to craft a core identity around an idea, not just a person.

TentBlogger was Crafted, Not Born

I like jeans.

You see, although I, being “the” TentBlogger, have always been in existence (as a flesh and blood person) the idea behind TentBlogger hasn’t already existed. It required a touch of strategy, a catalyst for movement forward, and execution to fill in the blanks.

So when I figured out what that brand was going to be it ultimately led me to a place where a cartoon or caricature would be the most appropriate, the most malleable, and the most memorable as opposed to a real picture of myself, which everyone and their brother provides on their blogs.

If I was going to stand out from the crowd (and it’s a very crowded industry) then the capital cost of finding an artist and commissioning some work would help me gain a foothold faster than just another blogger talking about blogging with a somewhat decent picture.

So I began crafting the brand rather than skating on existing equity and hoping that it would make the cut.

[For those that are interested, and there are quite a few of you, I commissioned Von Glitschka for my artwork!]

Why Consider an Investment in Artwork?

I’ve already mentioned a few of my reasons behind why I chose but I like lists and it helps me to think more clear! Here are 5 reasons for you to consider:

  1. It sets you a part, both from a creative perspective and your brand.
  2. The capital investment will do wonders for you in creating the distance between you and your other potential competitors in your space. I mean, the ProBlogger doesn’t even have a caricature! ;)
  3. It allows you complete creative freedom for your blog design while leveraging a consistent element (you!) throughout. I think this is very powerful and compelling reason.
  4. It just looks cool. Period.
  5. It’s a smaller capital investment in comparison to what you might spend on getting a redesign on your blog! For example, I’ve spent zero dollars on my blog design, which will probably be in the thousands of dollars eventually, and instead I’ve spent far less than this.

It’s not for everyone and I’m not dogmatic about this execution of your brand but it’s definitely something for you to consider.

Update: I’ve since moved a bit from this caricature into a more cartoon-ish look that’s a bit closer to what I had in mind. Check out my new Brand Image and a few other images that I had created!

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